Monday, August 21, 2017
by Mary Williams
BJH | Even when patients receive the best treatment, some still may be stressed and tired after they’re discharged from a hospital emergency room. And many patients may be financially stressed as well. These factors combined can present an obstacle for those who need to make another stop on the way home to pick up prescribed medications.
The new discharge pharmacy in the emergency department at Barnes-Jewish Hospital is working to help solve these kinds of obstacles for its patients.
“BJH now has a pharmacy actually located in the emergency department, where our patients can get their medications before they leave the hospital,” says Jim Gray, BJH pharmacy director. “This is a huge convenience for our patients and can help reduce readmissions.”
This new service is designed to serve discharged patients only.
Valerie Garber, PharmD, Mobile Pharmacy supervisor, notes that the pharmacy’s inventory should cover about 90 percent of the prescriptions written. And, she adds, pharmacists will manage each transaction, providing information about the prescribed drug and answering patients’ questions. The goal is to complete each transaction in about 15 minutes.
In 2015, a goal deployment process project, focused on the ED, was initiated and involved members of pharmacy leadership. The project helped to identify barriers patients face when they’re discharged from the ED. Getting prescribed medications proved to be a challenge for many patients due to a lack of transportation and the inability to pay.
“We’re able to offer patients a discount on their prescriptions,” says Garber. “Our prices are often less expensive than other pharmacies.”
Another pharmacy initiative, the Mobile Pharmacy, has been an effective way to serve hospital patients and help ensure they fill their prescriptions in a timely manner. The program is successful within the hospital, serving 55 percent of all discharged patients. But beds in the ED have to be turned over much more quickly than the services the Mobile Pharmacy can provide due to its higher volume of patient admissions.
“We’re constantly looking for ways to better serve our patients,” says Blake Exline, clinical program manager in the BJH emergency department. “It’s our duty to care for the underserved in our community by increasing access to resources that allow folks to stay healthy and be well. This has been a true team effort between the pharmacy and the ED operations team. We’re excited to offer this new convenience to our patients.”
Mary Williams, email@example.com
Tags : BJH pharmacy
Number of views (4183)/Comments (5)
8/21/2017 3:16 PM
Brilliant and so compassionate! Depending on discharge time it can even be difficult to find a pharmacy that is open.
8/23/2017 9:03 AM
This new discharge pharmacy is a great idea. Wish we could have this at all of our facilities.
8/23/2017 1:55 PM
That's nice if your at Barnes-Jewish ED but what if you're at Alton Memorial ED
8/27/2017 1:34 AM
This is a great idea! I wish also that we may have at all facilities. Also for the inpatients as well. My mom was in the hospital in Illinois and someone came to her room to fill her scripts, she paid for them when they delivered and had them to take home with her on discharge from the hospital. Keep these things coming. Will soon be so efficient that patients wont be able to go elsewhere. Thanks.
Lorie El Atlassi
9/29/2017 3:30 PM
I was in BJH a while ago, and the Mobile Pharmacy was great! Got all my meds to take home with me, and no extra stop (and long wait) to get them. Plus they had the more complex meds I needed that Walgreens may have not had.